Daily Briefing Jan 4, 2017

Sentifi Financial Crowd Discusses Corruption Around the World

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The AgustaWestland saga continues. The India’s Supreme Court announced that it will hear a public petition demanding a court-monitored probe against the journalists who were allegedly paid off by the company to write stories that favored its deal with Centre to sell VVIP helicopters. Close to 1,000 voices in Sentifi financial crowd are discussing this stories, so stick with Sentifi and join the conversations.

sentifi top attentions january 4

AgustaWestland: Sinks deeper into the bribery case

The company allegedly invited a group of Indian journalists on a fully paid trip to Italy. The goal was to seek “financial disclosures from the members of the media who have received funding and hospitality from foreign and domestic defense and other ancillary industries, and to make public this information and submit to the court on affidavit whether on these sums taxes have been paid or not.” All parties involved have been asked to submit reports to the top court.

TransUnion: Pays fines for deceptions

TransUnion and Equifax didn’t get a good start to the new year as the federal regulators have imposed multi-million-dollar fines on the companies to settle allegations that they used “negative option” to trick consumers into costly monthly subscriptions for credit score and report products that were advertised as free or costing $1. The companies will pay more than $17.6 million in restitution to the consumers and fines of $5.5 million to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

General Motors: Gets slammed by President-elect Donald Trump

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The car company’s shares got a rollercoaster experience after Trump posted the following tweet.

GM then cleared the record by saying all Chevrolet Cruze sedans sold in the U.S. are made in Ohio, only making the Chevrolet Cruze hatchback for global markets in Mexico, with a small number sold in the U.S. A few more members of the crowd pointed out how far from the truth Trump really was.

In essence, Trump’s tweet was ironic because he appointed the CEO of GM, Mary Barra, to an economic advisory panel following his win in the election.

Gama Aviation: Merges with BBA Aviation

Global business aviation service provider Gama Aviation has merged its U.S. aircraft management and charter business with that of British multinational aviation services company BBA Aviation on the basis of delivering significant additional growth for its U.S. Ground business. Both companies expect to receive cost synergies of not less than $2 million over two years.

Xerox Corporation: Spins off its business services unit Conduent

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Conduent handles everything from HR services for healthcare companies to mobile parking apps for the city of Los Angeles, but it has seen its revenue decline in recent year. Now it’s on its own to lift its growth amid stagnant sales and a tough market. The argument for this demermer is that having more nimble business will increase the adaptation to a changing technology world, not different from what Hewlett Packard did to its businesses. Unfortunately, Conduent was off to a bad start, as its shares fell 8 percent on its first day of independence.

Tax Reform: U.S. real estate industry braces for tax reform

The industry executives are speculating that President-elect Donald Trump will overhaul most tax laws according to his plans last year when he takes office. The changes are as follow:

  • The elimination of depreciation for real estate companies and other businesses. The current tax code allows for the cost of rental apartment buildings to depreciate over 27.5 years and up to 39 years for other commercial real estate.
  • The allowance of the cost of the property, excluding land, to be treated as a business expense used for tax deductions, therefore the expense can be labeled as net operating loss to reduce taxes if such deductions exceed taxable income.
  • The elimination of the state and local property tax deductions for those claiming itemized deductions.
  • The elimination of debt interest payment deductions for businesses.

Many industry executives firmly believe those planned changes will restructure the economics of the industry with devastating consequences.

EuropaCorp SA: Lays off 40 employees while outsourcing theatrical distribution team

French motion picture company EuropaCorp has signed a multi-year pact with American entertainment company STX Entertainment to outsource its theatrical distribution team. At the same time, the company laid off roughly 40 individuals involved in its theatrical distribution team.

Electra Ltd.: Acquires Golan Telecom

Israel’s largest and leading integrated electromechanical and construction company Electra has acquired upstart mobile phone operator Golan Telecom for $91 million. The company’s shares jumped 10 percent on the news. Golan has 10 percent of Israel’s mobile market thanks to cheap prices.

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